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Heart

The Sacrament of Holy Orders

Sacraments

  • Visible sign of an invisible grace
  • The means to become like Jesus

Divine

  • Out of this world
  • The Church offers something the world cannot give

Mercy

  • Mercy begins with ME
  • Disciples have an encounter with mercy before becoming instruments of mercy

Why this series is so important:

  • We encounter mercy in another’s love
  • Opening us to the divine. To become like Christ
  • For all of us through Baptism,
  • Bur for some in a special way through Ordination

Holy Orders, of course, is an Order – a hierarchy of Ordinations:

  • Deacon, Priest, Bishop

However, for this talk, want to focus on Priesthood SMSU

  • First Seminary in US, founded in 1791
  • From the Chapel, the heart of the house that forms future priests

Priest stands “In Persona Christi”

  • Pope Benedict – a bridge between God and His People
  • America’s Funniest Home Videos – boy lays down for sister

Postures

  • Laying Down – at Ordination. Repeated every Good Friday
    • Death. Dying to self. Becoming a bridge for others to walk over (“being used”)
  • Standing at Altar – every Mass
    • Resurrection
    • “We carry about in our bodies the dying of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus might be manifested in our mortal flesh” (2 Cor 4:10)

Renewing One Time Sacraments

  • Baptism, Confirmation, Marriage, Ordination
  • The use of Holy Water every time we enter a church
  • St. Paul write to Timothy to “Fan into Flame” the Gift of the Spirit
  • Priest upon entering sanctuary kisses the altar – covered with cloth like a bedsheet
    • Relic. Yes. Place of Sacrifice. Yes. Jesus is the altar. Yes.
    • Meeting of Bride and Bridegroom. A marital bed.
    • Just a couple “renews their vows” in the marital act,
    • Priest does so with the words, “This is my Body given up for you.”
  • The interconnectedness of the sacraments is beautiful.

SMSU video series

  • Each stained glass window captures the role of priesthood in the other sacraments of the Church. This is a fitting way to tie together our series on the Sacraments through the lens of Divine Mercy.
  • See more here: stmarys.edu/chapelvideos/

I invite you to pray for your priests.

  • Pray that they may fan into flame the gift of Ordination
  • Pray that they truly seek to be another Jesus,
  • and make that prayer for yourself,
    • as you share in the priesthood of Jesus through Baptism
  • Use the simple prayer of Divine Mercy and love for the Sacred Heart:
  • O Jesus, meek and humble of Heart, make my heart like unto thine.


Fr. Joe O’Connor serves as the pastor of St. Elizabeth Seton and Director of Seminarians for the Diocese of Syracuse, NY.

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